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[What follows is an nineteenth-century defense of Lamarckism, the since-disproven belief that genetics are molded by the activity or behavior of the organism, instead of through the process of natural selection. Naturally, anyone should be cautious when reviewing a scientific article written more than a hundred year ago, but at least here below, you can see what passionate turns the debate took. In Kropotkin's favor, it may at least be said that the process of natural selection turned out to be far more complicated than Darwin and Wallace had believed, and was only fully elaborated by Dawkins as gene-centric, rather than organism or species-centric. -- Andy Carloff] There can be no doubt that species may become greatly modified through the ... (From : Anarchy Archives.)

FLEETWOOD; or, THE NEW MAN OF FEELING. by WILLIAM GODWIN. CHAPTER V IT is not my purpose to convert these honest pages into a record of dissipations; far less, of the rude and unseemly dissipations of an overgrown boy. There are few ebaracters more repulsive than that in which we find conjoined the fresh and ingenuous lineaments of a young man, in whom the down has scarcely yet shaded his prosperous cheek, with the impudence of a practiced libertine. I look back upon it with horror. Youth, if once it has broken through the restraints of decorum, is the minister of cruelty. Even in me, whose disposition was naturally kind and humane, there was too much of this. It is suffering only that can inspire us with true sympathy, that can render us alive to those trifles which constitute so large a portion of earthly misery or happiness, that can give us a feeling of th...

Our Synthetic Environment Murray Bookchin Chapter 2 - Agriculture and Health Soil and Agriculture Problems of soil and agriculture seldom arouse the interest of urban dwellers. Town and country have become so sharply polarized that the city man and the farmer live in widely separated, contrasting, and often socially antagonistic worlds. The average resident of an American metropolis knows as little about the problems of growing food as the average farmer knows about the problems of mass transportation. The city man, to be sure, does not need to be reminded that good soil is important for successful farming. He recognizes the necessity for conservation and careful management of the land. But his knowledge of food cultivation - its techniques, problems, and prospects - is limited. He leaves the land in trust to the farmer in the belief that modern agricultural methods cannot fail to produce attractive and nourishing food. In...


The Newcastle Daily Chronicle: February 20, 1985, p4. Reprinted in Small Communal Experiments and Why They Fail Jura Books Editor's Preface Peter Kropotkin (1842-1921) was one of the greatest anarchist theoreticians of his time. Although he admired the directly democratic and non-authoritarian practices of the traditional peasant village commune, he was never an advocate of small and isolated communal experimentalism. Many people, upon reading his works, have been inspired to found such communities, both in his own time as well as the hippies of the 1960s (a period when Kropotkin's major works were republished and influential). Kropotkin did not consider such ventures were likely to be successful or useful in achieving wider revolutionary g... (From : Anarchy Archives.)


"THAT will reconcile me to life," writes Emerson, "and renovate nature, to see trifles animated by a tendency, and to know what I am doing." And which of us, tortured and reduced well nigh to despair by the horrible degradation of human dignity in the existing hypocritical and unnatural sexual relations, does not feel the need for such a vision of the end and meaning of our present pain, if still we are to fight on. This essay by K. P.1 is one of those jets of thought which pierce the misty confusion of times when the air is full of the dust of out-worn forms and faded beliefs with a ray of positive and reasoned conviction, pointing the road to a new order in human life more in correspondence with our consciousness of reality. Following the... (From : AnarchyArchives.)


Last summer I received from the Toronto organizing committee the invitation to come out to Canada with the British Association. It is well known, but it gives me great pleasure to acknowledge it once more that the members of the British Association, whether British or foreign, received from the Canadians -- and those of us who went to the States from the Americans -- the most friendly welcome, and were treated with the utmost cordiality and hospitality. Many a standing friendship between scientific men of the Old and the New World has grown up during that visit. After the meeting of the British Association was over a most instructive trip was organized by the Canadian Pacific Railway Association across the continent to Vancouver, and I had ... (From : Anarchy Archives.)

ESSAY XII OF THE LIBERTY OF HUMAN ACTIONS. The question, which has been attended with so long and obstinate debates, concerning the metaphysical doctrines of liberty and necessity, and the freedom of human actions, is not even yet finally and satisfactorily settled. The negative is made out by an argument which seems to amount to demonstration, that every event requires a cause, a cause why it is as it is and not otherwise, that the human will is guided by motives, and is consequently always ruled by the strongest motive, and that we can never choose any thing, either without a motive of preference, or in the way of following the weaker, and deserting the stronger motive1. Why is it then that disbelief or doubt should still subsist in a question so fully decided? For the same reason that compels us to reject many other demonstrations. The human mind is so constituted as to oblige us, if not theoretically, at lea...


From: Peter Kropotkin . "What Geography Ought to Be." The Nineteenth Century. V.18, pp. 940-56. WHAT GEOGRAPHY OUGHT TO BE.1 It was easy to foresee that the great revival of Natural Science which our generation has had the happiness to witness for thirty years, as also the new direction given to scientific literature by a phalanx of prominent men who dared to bring up the results of the most complicated scientific research in a shape accessible to the general reader, would necessarily bring about a like revival of Geography. This science, which takes up the laws discovered by its sister sciences, and shows their mutual action and consequences with regard to the surfaces of the globe, could not remain an outsider to the general scientific mo... (From : Anarchy Archives.)

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